Thursday, August 29, 2013

Quinoa Burgers | Gluten Free

My good friend, Jenny, first introduced me to the amazing quinoa burger. I was on my way to pick up my daughter from school, and I stopped by her house where she ran out a plate of deliciousness to me. She is so awesome and gave me THREE burgers (I thought I was just getting a taste!). Sitting in car line, I had to stop myself from eating all 3 while waiting for school to let out. I knew I had to save some for my husband to try. I could live off of these things, they are so yummy. I've changed the original recipe a bit to make them gluten free. There are several variations of the recipe out there, but this is the one I always come back to.

I like to serve them on toasted flat bread or UDI's gluten free whole grain bread with a little Trader Joe's organic ketchup.

Here's the recipe :)

Yields about 6 patties/burgers.

1 cup cooked quinoa (see below for cooking instructions)
1/2 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
1/4 cup cottage cheese
1 carrot, finely grated
1 egg
1 TBS gluten free flour (I use Trader Joe's gluten free flour mix)
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 packet of Stevia
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp ground cumin
pinch of salt

To cook quinoa: Rinse 1/2 cup quinoa VERY well. If not rinsed well, it will have a bitter taste. Add the rinsed quinoa and 1 cup of water to a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then simmer, covered for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. When almost all of the water is absorbed, remove the lid and continue to cook on low until all water is absorbed.

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. I find these cook best in a non-stick pan sprayed with Trader Joe's Coconut Oil spray over medium high heat. I use a 1/4 cup measuring cup, and drop the mixture into the pan, and flatten slightly to about 1/2 inch. I then cover the pan loosely with tin foil and let them cook 3-5 minutes before carefully flipping them. 


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Friday, August 23, 2013

The Offner Family Welcomes Baby Ben | Lifestyle Newborn Session | Bradenton Sarasota Family Photographer

Mom, Dad, Ema and 4-pawed family member, Zoe welcomed Benjamin Daniel Offner to their family on August 6th 2013. Baby Ben was 11 days old for his photo debut. Ema got to 'hold' Ben for the first time, and it brought tears of joy to everyone to see her sweet reactions. Zoe was very well behaved and cautious around the baby. She is a very loved member of their beautiful family.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Back to school words ...

Powerful words from very brave and inspiring mamas. I've been wanting to write a post about my favorite blogs, but didn't want to say, "Hey friends! These blogs rock! You should read them, too!" But now, with the start of school, I found a fitting and meaningful way to share the words of these amazing women. Each has written a post that I have read (or paraphrased) to my 6 year old daughter. There's some heavy reading ahead, you may want to wait until the kiddos are asleep and arm yourself with a box of tissues.

Kelle Hampton of Enjoying the Small Things
Be That Girl

Glennon Melton of Momastery
Dear Chase

Chrissy Kelly of Life with Greyson and Parker
Super Powers

Kelle and Glennon have written books that I have read and highly recommend. I wish I had an ounce of the writing skills that they have in their pinky fingers.

Bloglovin' is an awesome app to keep up to date on your reading, especially while in car line ;)

PS - If it wasn't for my friend, Maggie, who waited so patiently for me to start reading these, I would never have been able to write this post :)

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Saturday, August 10, 2013

Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins | Gluten Free | Refined Sugar Free

These red velvet mini muffins are decadent, moist and delicious. They totally satisfy sweet, chocolatey cravings. And the best part is that they are gluten and refined sugar free! They have 2 unexpected ingredients, prunes and beets :) My kids gobble them up.

Adapted from this recipe.

Yields about 24 mini muffins

1 cup beet puree
1/2 cup prunes
2 eggs
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 TBS vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour

1 1/2 TBS cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/2 - 3/4 cup Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Peel and cube the beets, then boil them for about 10 minutes to slightly soften them.

Add the beets, along with the rest of the other wet ingredients to a food processor (I like using a Vitamix because of how well it blends the ingredients).

Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl. Combine wet and dry ingredients, then add chocolate chips. Spray a mini muffin pan with baking spray. I prefer to use Trader Joe's coconut oil spray. Fill the muffin pan about 3/4 of the way.

Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Let them cool for several minutes before moving them to a cooling rack. I like to store them in the fridge.


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Sunday, August 4, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookies | Gluten Free | Refined Sugar Free

I am on a mission to find the most delicious gluten free and refined sugar free recipes for baked goods.  I have read and tried many such cookie recipes. I look for recipes with few ingredients and I prefer to bake with almond flour. I also prefer to use low glycemic index sweeteners like honey or maple syrup.

I've combined ingredients from several recipes and added a few of my own to make my version of the perfect chocolate chip cookie. These are soft and delicious and have almost a cake-like consistency inside :)

Yields 1 dozen (I like to bake in small batches, but you could easily double this recipe to make more)

1 cup Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour

1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp fine sea salt
2 tbs melted Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil 
1/8 cup pure maple syrup
1 egg
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp lemon extract
1/4 cup Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix wet ingredients in another bowl. Combine wet and dry ingredients, then add chocolate chips. Drop tablespoons of batter onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 350 for 8 minutes, or until edges turn slightly brown. Let them cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before moving them to a cooling rack.


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